At the end of the day, Redford has some promises to keep, which are well beyond the budget she passed prior to the election. Having gained 16 seats in this election can easily be characterized as a win for the Wildrose Party. The party, as the official opposition, can at the least keep Redford accountable, on fiscal responsibility, property rights, transmission lines and a myriad of smaller issues that should have been discussed during this election but were hi-jacked by conscience issues that were settled a couple of decades ago.
Smith was right not to throw those candidates under the bus. It may have cost her a few seats, but the principle of free speech was protected. It should perhaps have been settled during the AGM, but unfortunately it wasn't. Such is hindsight in politics.
There is no doubt that Alison Redford ran a well oiled campaign, with the full force of the Alberta PC apparatus behind her. Her success, however, will depend how she handles her promises. Those have to result in reducing waiting lists, better care for seniors and an improving economy. How she handles big oil and the environment will be another measure. In any case, the people of Alberta have spoken and one can only hope that Alison Redford indeed changes the negative image of her PC party. Continuing with the old arrogant ways will not help her.